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ProposedRuleChangeConstitutionalAmendment

Strengthentherulesagainstmemberswhoengageinantisemitism,Islamophobia,and
racism

TheLabourPartyRuleBook2016Chapter2MembershiprulesClauseIConditionsof
Membership,Section8currentlymakesallowancesfortheNECtosuspendmembersofthe
partywhoareconsideredtohaveactedinawaythatisgrosslydetrimentaltotheParty.

Thissectionreads(Page9)readsasfollows:
NomemberofthePartyshallengageinconductwhichintheopinionoftheNECisprejudicial,
orinanyactwhichintheopinionoftheNECisgrosslydetrimentaltotheParty.Anydisputeas
towhetheramemberisinbreachoftheprovisionsofthissubclauseshallbedeterminedbythe
NCCinaccordancewithChapter1ClauseIXaboveandthedisciplinaryrulesandguidelinesin
Chapter6below.WhereappropriatetheNCCshallhaveregardtoinvolvementinfinancial
supportfortheorganisationand/ortheactivitiesofanyorganisationdeclaredineligiblefor
affiliationtothePartyunderChapter1.II.5or3.Caboveortothecandidatureofthemembersin
oppositiontoanofficiallyendorsedLabourPartycandidateorthesupportforsuchcandidature.
TheNCCshallnothaveregardtothemereholdingorexpressionofbeliefsandopinions.

Amendment
Addanadditionalsentenceafterthefirstsentence:
AmemberofthePartywhousesantisemitic,Islamophobic,racistlanguage,sentiments,
stereotypesoractionsinpublic,private,onlineoroffline,asdeterminedbytheNEC,shallbe
deemedtohaveengagedinconductprejudicialtotheParty.
Addattheendofthefinalsentenceafteropinions:
exceptininstancesinvolvingantisemitism,Islamophobiaorracism
InsertnewparagraphE:
Whereamemberisresponsibleforahateincident,beingdefinedassomethingwherethe
victimoranyoneelsethinkitwasmotivatedbyhostilityorprejudicebasedondisability,race,
religion,transgenderidentity,orsexualorientation,theNECmayhavetherighttoimposethe
appropriatedisciplinaryoptionsfromthefollowingoptions:[sameasD]

Supportingargumentandrationale
ShadowChancellorJohnMcDonnellhascalledforlifebanstobeimposeduponPartymembers
whoengageinantisemitism.However,thecurrentLabourPartyrulesdonothaveclear
provisionsthatmakeantisemitism,Islamophobiaorracismanoffenseforwhichamemberis
automaticallyexpelledfromtheparty.

Therulesdocurrentlyhavethreeclauseswhichdiscusssituationsinwhichamemberofthe
partycanbeautomaticallyexcludediftheysupportanotherparty.Thismakesitseemthat
supportinganotherparty,intheeyesoftherulebook,isamuchworseoffensethanracism.

Thecurrentruleshavecausedasituationinwhichantisemiteshavebeenabletoremaininthe
party,orrejoinafterperiodsofsuspension,despiteNECinvestigations,andstandforofficein
CLPs.Thiscausedmajorembarrassmentforthepartyanddistractedfromourcoreobjectiveof
promotingourpolicyplatformlessthantwomonthsfromcrucialelections.
TheNECneedsmorepowertobeabletoactswiftlyagainstantisemitism,Islamophobiaand
otherformsofracism.TheLabourPartyneedstobeseentosetanexamplewhen
investigatingallegationsofracismwithinitsownstructuresandmembershipbase.

TheLabourParty(andwiderLabourmovement)hasalongtraditionofpromotingantiracism
andfightingdiscrimination.WhilstantisemitismandIslamophobiaaredifferentanddistinct
formsofracism,theriseofbothisaworryingtrend.

RecentmurderousattacksontheJewishcommunityaroundEuropehavecreatedaparticular
senseofvulnerabilityamongstEuropeanJews.
AgainstthehistoryoftheHolocaustin
particular,theincreaseofantisemitismacrossEuropefromfarright,nationalistpartiesandother
diversesourcesincludingontheleftandwithinextremeIslamistgroupsisaparticularconcern.

IslamophobicincidentsintheUKhaverisensignificantlyinrecentyears.Thereareincreased
fearsamongMuslimcommunitiesasaresultofthisandthestigmathattheyface.Muslim
womeninparticularareconcernedabouttheirsafety.MetropolitanPolicefiguresreleasedin
early2016showedthatantiMuslimhatecrimeinLondonhasalmostdoubledintwoyears.
PopulistnationalistmovementsinEuropesingleoutIslamandMuslimsastargetsforvilification
andattack.ThelatestEUMinoritiesandDiscriminationSurveyin2015foundthatoneinthree
Muslimsrespondentsfaceddiscrimination&prejudiceinthelastyearandelevenpercent
experiencedahatecrime.

Thisrulechangewouldmakeaclearstatementthatantisemitism,Islamophobiaandracism
havenoplaceinanypoliticalparty,orinourcommunities.Thiswillalsobeanactofsolidarity
withourJewishandMuslimcomrades,whoareavaluedandessentialpartofourparty.This
rulechangewouldnotpreventpeoplefromcriticisingtheactionsoftheStateofIsrael,or
policiesofitselectedGovernment.Itwoulddrawadistinctionbetweenlegitimatediscourseand
antisemiticrhetoricwhichisinflammatory,divisive,dangerousandunderminestheabilityofour
partytomakeaseriouscontributiontothestruggleforpeacebetweenIsraelandthe
Palestinians.Zionismisnosingleconceptotherthanthebasicexpressionofthenational
identityoftheJewishpeople,arighttowhichallpeopleareentitled.Thisrulechangewould
recognisethatitisnotacceptabletouseZionismasatermofabuseortosubstitutetheword
ZionistforwherethewordJewhasbeencommonlyusedbyantisemites,suchasalleging
Jewishpolitical,financialormediaconspiraciesandcontrol.

ItwouldalsogivedueregardtotheMacphersondefinitionofaracistincidentwhichplaces
particularvalueupontheperceptionofthevictim/victimgroup.

ThepurposeofthisrulechangeisgivetheNECthepowertoactimmediatelywhenmembers
commitantisemitism,Islamophobiaorracism,andmakesurethatsuchpeopleareremoved
fromthepartywhereappropriate.

Closingdateforconstitutionalamendments:24June2016